September 18, 2020
How to make your own laundry detergent at home for cheap

How to make your own laundry detergent at home for cheap

Quarantining for nearly five months due to the coronavirus pandemic has brought out a homesteader streak I barely knew I had. My husband and I started a backyard garden, then I tried churning butter. Now I’m testing out various DIY cleaners and detergents I can make at home for cheap with few ingredients. I’m already using a make-at-home oven cleaner dreamed up by my friend Ashlee Clark and a vinegar-centric all purpose cleaner shared by Nancy Birtwhistle on Instagram (the 2014 winner of The Great British Bake Off).

It was time to venture over to laundry — specifically laundry detergent

My colleague Julie Snyder, who’s in the above YouTube video, extensively researched this topic to arrive at this DIY laundry detergent recipe, sourced from Bren Fey of the Bren Did blog. As always, take care when you’re trying out any DIY solutions for the first time. Test them with a small load of laundry to begin and stop if you experience any irritation.  

Step 1: Buy the ingredients 

You’ll need: 


These ingredients can make up to 72 loads of laundry detergent. 

Julie Snyder/CNET

Step 2: Mix the ingredients

  • Put the water on to boil
  • While the water is heating up, pour two-thirds of a cup of Super Washing Soda into your glass or stainless steel container (don’t use an aluminum container; the sodium carbonate in the washing soda can damage it)
  • Add half of the boiling water to the jar (let the water cool slightly before adding it to a glass container) and slowly mix until the Washing Soda is fully dissolved
  • Mix in the half cup of Sal Suds and then stir in the remaining water 
  • Let it cool to room temperature 

Step 3: Laundry time

After the laundry detergent is cool, you can either start doing laundry right away (use a quarter of a cup for each load of laundry) or put on the lid and store it until you need it. 

The measurements I provided in the recipe are enough for 18 loads of laundry. If you bought the 16-ounce Sal Suds and 55-ounce Super Washing Soda, you can make up to 72 loads of laundry detergent with the ingredients at less than $0.30 a wash. 

Read more: How to clean your oven with stuff you already have at a home

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